nos-trum. pronunciation: \nos'-trum\. noun. Etymology: Latin, neuter of noster our, ours.
1. a medicine of secret composition recommended by its preparer but usually without scientific proof of its effectiveness.
2. a usually questionable remedy or scheme.
See here for more discussion.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Article: Judging Risk Of Alternative Medicine

A quick plug for a great article on complementary and alternative medicines.  No shouting and name calling, just a discussion of the science.

If you have an extra 10-15 minutes, I highly recommend the article cited below at Science-Based Medicine.  The site publishes high quality articles that concentrate on the evidence--from sound research--into medical treatments, their benefits and potential harm.

If you have beliefs that can't be modified by controlled clinical trials and scientific plausibility, then this is not for you.

The comments section of the article is also worthwhile, as commenters discuss some of the issues raised in the article--without insulting each other.

This is the citation:  The risks of CAM: How much do we know? by Scott Gavura.

One last thing.  If you use supplements or other alternatives medicines please list them when your doctor asks you what you're taking.  Studies suggest that over half either don't consider them a "medicine" to put on the list, or they don't feel comfortable letting their doctor know they're taking them  (I don't judge my patients' decisions, we discuss them).

Not notifying your doctor is unwise.  There are interactions between pharmaceuticals and herbals/supplements that could be adverse.  Even simple things like Vitamin A.

Doc D

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